Incarnation

Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross!                                                                                                             Philippians 2:5-8

Incarnation. That is what Christmas is about. The word is from the Latin word carne, meaning flesh. Literally, it means “in the flesh”. Christmas, of course, is the celebration of when Jesus came in the flesh. He became an “in flesh” visitor to the earth.

He came to earth in order to save humankind from sin, and he did that by his own sacrifice. He also came in order to show humans how to live a life pleasing to God. His example was his mission. He visited earth to show how we can make the earth a better place too.

He was intentional in his visit. It was well planned over many centuries of human existence. So too we should plan our visits with other people. Our visits with others should be with the intention of kindness and an uplift of the human spirit.

Yet, we fail at that with some regularity.

However, you notice that even in the most mundane, trivial, and casual occurrences of kindness to others, the spirit of the other person is lifted for just a little while. I noted that today when at a local store I held the door for a delivery man who was pushing a dolly loaded with products. He was very thankful for just a little gesture of kindness and thought. That gesture cost me nothing, yet it made his work today just a little easier. He had been acknowledged and cared for in the smallest way, but it lifted him up.

So, we can be the incarnation of the virtue of kindness to others. Kindness is an abstract value, but it comes to life when we exercise it. We can become the incarnation of it.   

Prayer: Lord, remind us of the power of little gestures that can have large impact, Amen.

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